President’s Message - ‘Tis the Season / by Michael Graves

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The holiday season is upon us. Whether or not you celebrate Christmas, there is no getting around the fact, the holiday season is fast approaching. For the Woodland Heights, the holiday season comes with more than its annual evening of fun, Lights In The Heights.

The LITH big night is December 8th, a Saturday, as a culmination of several events coordinated by the Woodland Heights Civic Association via the LITH Committee. Lighter In The Heights, completed over two weekends (October 8 and October 15), expertly pulled off by Sharon Greiff and the LITH committee despite rain on the first weekend, gave folks in the neighborhood a chance to be free of their garage sale items without going through the hassle of staging a garage sale.

November 3 at 7 PM is Light Up The Night Bash, a casual gathering for fun and frolic, will feature unique silent auction items, food from neighborhood restaurants, wine, and beer. Friday Night Lights on December 7 (I luv the name of this casual gathering for neighbors on the Norhill Esplanade!) followed by the biggie, LITH. There are full details on the events, opportunities and merchandise posted on the WHCA website under https://www.woodland-heights.org/lith/.

After months of planning and coordination, at our WHCA General Meeting and General Forum (for all Woodland Heights residents, not just those who are members of the WHCA) of September 11, Sharon Greiff presented a detailed overview of all the plans and preparation going into pulling off a fun, safe and secure LITH. Several members of the Mayor’s Office of Special Events along with Representative Cisneros and her Director of Special Operations were in attendance along with numerous WHCA members and non-member residents. The crowd showed unanimous support of all the efforts put forth to better LITH. No one who had a negative opinion of LITH or might have a criticism of the organizers and their plans attended.

That stated, we, the Board of the WHCA, know there are those in the neighborhood who long for the good old days when LITH was a tiny event almost exclusively for the neighborhood. Gone are those days. Personally, I moved into the neighborhood in 2007 and have lived on both Omar and Bayland, the guts of the LITH in years past. I personally witnessed the huge attendances and have also personally witnessed the decrease in attendance over the last few years. This decrease is the result of a concerted effort by previous WHCA Boards and LITH Committees to “localize” the event. These efforts have been hugely successful by decreasing the attendance more than 50 percent. As my wife would say, Good on ya, you beaut!

For all the gains, there is no doubt there was and will be continue to be incidents which rancor some folks in the neighborhood. To the extent possible, the LITH committee and the WHCA Board of Directors have worked diligently to limit the potential of such incidents and secure the event in such a way, should such incidents occur, a suitable response is available. The Board and LITH Committee cannot control individual behavior. We suggest, should you witness foul behavior, report it. The LITH Committee have seen to it there is plenty of security, both HPD and Constable Patrol.

Although the General Neighborhood Forum for LITH is past, we have another WHCA General Meeting scheduled for November 13th. We invite you to attend. If you are not a member of the WHCA, we also invite you to join so you too will have a chance to vote your opinion on any issue raised to a ballot.

Harry McMahon
President
Woodland Heights Civic Association